top of page

Three Peak Mountain Snowflake Symbol: What Does It Mean?

With winter quickly and inevitably approaching, winter tires will become a necessity sooner than you may think. Now, you may feel that you have all-season tires, so you’re all set, but Canadian winters tend to be severe, cold and snowy, and dedicated winter tires come with many significant benefits for winter driving.

Some of them bear a symbol that marks them as the top of the line regarding severe winter driving: the Three Peak Mountain Snowflake Symbol. If you want to find out more, read on because this blog will look at the three-peak Mountain Snowflake symbol and what it means.

Where To Find the Three Peak Mountain Snowflake (3PMSF) Symbol

You can find the three-peak mountain snowflake symbol, or 3PMSF, on a tire’s sidewall, often next to the letters M+S (mud and snow rated). It shows a snowflake inside the outline of a three-peaked mountain. The icon indicates that the tire has been made from a special rubber compound that remains pliable in colder conditions (at or below 4℃), giving improved grip on snow and ice-covered roads.

You can find the 3PMSF on some A/T (all-terrain) and all-weather tires, meaning that they offer more grip than a standard all-season tire.

Do you want to ensure you’re prepared for severe winter conditions? Choose a set of dedicated winter tires with the 3PMSF. They clear away slush at higher speeds and give you improved cornering and breaking on snow-covered roads and icy conditions.

What Does the 3PMSF Symbol Mean?

The Canadian Government requires that tires marked with a three-peak mountain snowflake (3PMSF) symbol must comply with minimum safety standards for winter driving. Transport Canada establishes regulations under the Motor Vehicle Safety Act (MVSA), which specify the tires identified with the 3PMSF symbol must pass the ASTM F-1805 Driving Traction Test on a medium-packed snow surface. The ASTM F-1805 Driving Traction Test is a well-established performance-based standard for winter tire testing.

Manufacturers are continuously improving tread patterns and compounds to improve performance, and tires with the 3PMSF symbol ensure you get the best performance in winter conditions.

3PMSF vs Mud and Snow (M+S) Tires

Mud and snow tires, indicated by the M+S designation on the tire wall, are suitable for muddy, wet and snowy road conditions. Their tread pattern is primarily responsible for the designation as it allows water, mud and snow to run off easier, giving the tires more grip under these conditions.

However, this does not mean that they are genuine winter tires. There is no test to verify the traction performance of M+S tires, so while looking at the tread, it gives the clear expectation of improved grip but no tested guarantee. On the other hand, tires with the 3PMSF symbol must meet standards to bear the symbol, so you can rest assured that you get the best possible grip and performance.

3PMSF vs Traditional All-Season Tires

Traditional all-season tires are a popular choice among motorists to get the best of all seasons and avoid maintaining two sets of tires. As the name indicates, they give good to excellent performance throughout the year, even in winter. However, while they are better than regular summer tires, there is no guarantee how well they will perform as the A/S designation does not come from a performance test but the tread pattern.

A dedicated winter tire with the 3PMSF symbol has an optimized tread design that works particularly well to clear slush or mixed-condition snow and is better at low-temperature braking and cornering. Their rubber compound is also designed to give optimal tire performance in snow and at low temperatures.


Safety is the top priority while driving, which is even more important during winter with its often treacherous and challenging road conditions. Winter tires with the three-peak mountain snowflake symbol are an excellent way to keep yourself and other road users safe even when the Canadian winter is trying to obstruct your way.

GoWrench Auto has a wide selection of dedicated winter tires and offers a professional winter tire swap service. You don’t have space to safely and securely store your tires? No problem; GoWrench Auto’s tire storage service has you covered. Our mobile fleet can pick up your tires and keep them in a climate-controlled facility, ensuring they are protected from the elements and ready for use when needed. Say goodbye to cluttered garages and hello to a hassle-free tire storage solution.

If you have ever found yourself stuck somewhere with a car or tire problem, you know that calling and waiting for a tow truck to bring your car to a garage, where you will have to wait even longer, is highly inconvenient. This is why GoWrench Auto brings the service to your location with our mobile auto and tire repair services, whether you need new SUV tires or fix a flat on your car.

With highly-trained mechanics, the right technology, a dedicated customer service team, and the proper equipment, over 500 services can be completed at your workplace, on the job or in your driveway. GoWrench Auto is here to change the way you think about car repairs.

Call us today at (866) 959-1195 to learn how we can help you with your tire change!


bottom of page